Heat coach Spoelstra sees ‘tornado’ in Bulls’ Derrick Rose
BY Herb Gould email@example.com May 22, 2011 10:36PM
Chicago Bull's head coach Tom Thibodeau speaks to Derrick Rose during the first half of Game 3 of the NBA Eastern Conference finals basketball series against the Miami Heat in Miami, Sunday, May 22, 2011. (AP Photo/Wilfredo Lee)
Updated: August 21, 2011 12:21AM
MIAMI — Now there’s a new category for describing how much Derrick Rose means to the Bulls’ offense: meteorological.
‘‘There’s no question he generates a lot of their offense,’’ Miami Heat coach Erik Spoelstra said Sunday. ‘‘He’s like trying to contain a tornado. It’s unpredictable, the explosiveness. All of that can break down your defense. It comes down to your instincts and making multiple efforts. Against Chicago, which is such a great offensive rebounding team, you have to be relentless with your pursuit. You cannot stop.
‘‘If they do get a second opportunity, you have to keep pursuing. Rose is a catalyst for a large portion of their offense. It’s not a secret. It’s not easy to contain. It’s much easier said than done.’’
It’s also no secret that because both teams are so strong at half-court defense, both teams value uptempo offense.
‘‘Late in [Game 2 in Chicago on Wednesday], I didn’t like the pace,’’ Bulls coach Tom Thibodeau said. ‘‘It became a walk-it-up-the-floor-type game. That’s not a good game for us. Part of that problem was our rebounding. We have to finish our defense, fall out quickly and run. If we do that, we can attack before the defense is set.’’
And like stopping Rose, that is easier said than done.
‘‘It’s not as if either team isn’t trying to get points in transition,’’ Spoelstra said. ‘‘But it’s such a battle on the boards that virtually everybody has to be on the glass for both teams. It’s changing the floor balance.’’
That’s obviously not a good situation for fast-break offense, but both teams will keep trying.
Because, as Spoelstra said, ‘‘In the halfcourt, it’s hard to manufacture and execute for wide-open looks. They’re at a premium in this series.’’
Lessons of Game 2
There was a lot of angst in Chicago after the Bulls were defeated in Game 2. Seeing some positives, though, the Bulls weren’t taking the doom and gloom to heart.
‘‘We don’t listen to stuff like that,’’ forward Taj Gibson said, ‘‘because we held them to 85 points. Our defense was there, our intensity was there. And it’s a lot harder to play defense [against] LeBron James and Dwyane Wade.
‘‘We just didn’t get the shots to go down. We had good looks. It was a struggling shooting night, but every NBA team has that.’’
That said, the Bulls knew they had things to work on for Game 3.
‘‘They swarmed the paint, and they rebounded the ball late,’’ Gibson said. ‘‘No second-chance shots for us that much. They were rebounding well, [getting] loose balls, they were denying any kind of penetration late. We had great looks. They just didn’t drop.’’